To raise non-fare revenues, Indian Railways runs health ATMs, provides quick diagnostics
Waiting for his train at Nagpur station, Shankar Dayal’s eyes ran to a sleek white machine which read ‘Health ATM’ modestly placed at one end of the waiting hall on platform number 1. With the indicator showing about 30 minutes before his train arrival, Dayal curiously walked up to the Health ATM. A paramedic at the kiosk asked him to hold the grab handles of the machine and stand on an attached platform that works as a weighing scale. Within seconds came out a printed slip which had analysed Dayal’s Body Mass Index (BMI), and hydration level, which was low. The report further elaborated that his blood sugar and blood pressure were in the normal range but proteins were low.
“It was all tested for Rs 60 and within a few minutes — that too at the railway station. Any pathologist would have taken at least Rs 200 for some basic test but there it was — as simple as withdrawing cash,” said Dayal.
These Health ATMs have brought together “point of care devises” assembled with software to give out medical reports instantly. The machines can test for 16 different non-invasive nutritional parameters. “They have reinvented health testing and made it affordable,” said Shyju Raju, a resident of Hyderabad, who also got his test done at Nagpur.